The Northwood/Pleasant City area is located in the northeast corner of West Palm Beach and consists of 14 residential neighborhoods surrounding a historic business district known as the Northwood Village.
With its own “Main Street”, the district is home to unique restaurants, quant antique shops and specialty boutiques. Comprised of new and historic homes, the area is rich with cultural history, enjoys neighborhood parks, is just a mile north of downtown West Palm Beach, and is only a short walk to the Intracoastal Waterway. The residents who call Northwood/Pleasant City home are a diverse mixture of people and cultures from around the world that gives the community its unique flavor.
Neighborhood Renaissance has made great strides to increase and preserve workforce housing that is affordable for area residents. We have undertaken comprehensive neighborhood improvements that benefit the overall Northwood community.
To these ends, we continue our work in the Northwood area through the following programs:
- Community Land Trust
- Lease-Purchase Housing Program
- Neighborhood Stabilization Program 2
- Village Centre
The progress made in Northwood-Pleasant City would not have been possible without the continued support of our dedicated partner:
The Northwood neighborhoods in West Palm Beach have not been immune to the economic crisis that has impacted the entire County. During the last year Neighborhood Renaissance has continued to be an asset to residents with the help of our partners.
Through our partnership with JP Morgan Chase and the Florida Community Loan Fund, we completed the substantial renovation of a vacant, foreclosed home in the Northwood Hills neighborhood. The home was given to the agency through Chase’s REO Community Revitalization Program. The construction financing was provided through a revolving line of credit with the Loan Fund. The remodel of the home was extensive and included energy efficient updates, such as impact glass windows, the installation of central air conditioning and updating the electrical and plumbing systems. Now that construction is completed, this house is occupied by a family who loves the neighborhood and is working towards potentially purchasing their residence in the future.
Despite this success, there is much more that can be done in Northwood. The number of homes that remain vacant and dilapidated still remains high. According to HUD’s foreclosure index, Northwood has nearly 550 properties that have been vacant for more than three months and 20.3% of households are delinquent in their mortgage, which could lead to more foreclosures and vacancies. With local government support, our success in the Hills could be replicated in other neighborhoods throughout the City.
Neighborhood Renaissance established its Community Land Trust (CLT) in 2005 with a grant from the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties. This initiative was undertaken to provide affordable ownership opportunities for Northwood/ Pleasant City low and moderate-income residents who were being displaced by the surge in housing prices. We also saw this as an opportunity to permanently secure the financial investments made to revitalize the area for the benefit of future generations.
A CLT separates the ownership of the home from the underlying land and retains title to the land. This results in a lower purchase price because the cost of the land is deducted from the sales price. The legal structure for a CLT is very similar to those used for condominium and town home communities. The rights of both parties are secured with a 99-year renewable ground lease that is filed at the County. Included in the document are restrictions that prohibit the CLT from selling the land under any home to a third party and it sets the allowable increases in the monthly land lease fee, including how often they may occur.
Today, our CLT has 13 homes that are permanently affordable for the area’s workforce. In the event of resale, these homes will only be sold to income qualified first-time homebuyers. We are currently looking for opportunities to expand the number of homes in our CLT. We want to preserve additional affordable homes for future homebuyers and to continue to stabilize the Northwood area.
For more information about the CLT, please contact Christina Hewitt, Housing Manager at (561) 832-6776, ext. 104.
As Neighborhood Renaissance was completing the final CLT homes, the housing and mortgage lending markets drastically changed and the foreclosure crisis began. Many low-income renters including our current tenants were being displaced due to landlord foreclosures. To address these conditions, we developed a Lease-to-Purchase program with a $375,000 grant from the Housing & Community Development Dept. of Palm Beach County.
Currently, this program includes 5 of the homes in the CLT and each is rented to the future owner with an option to purchase. All the participants are receiving ongoing case management and making progress in overcoming their barriers to homeownership.
In the future we look to expand this program to include additional homes in the Northwood-Pleasant City neighborhoods through our Northwood Neighborhood Stabilization Initiative.
• The Boys and Girls Club in Northwood now operates the Sunshine Food Co-OP. Each shopping trip costs $30.00 and includes 3 times more food than you could purchase at the supermarket. Take advantage of these savings! Call Christina Hewitt at 832-6776 ext. 104 for more information.
• Make sure to clean out and recycle yard debris before hurricane season starts.
• Remember, rental and community land trust lease payments are due on the first of each month, please mail or drop off payments to 510 24th St., Suite A, West Palm Beach, FL 33407
Association Meeting Schedules and Contact Information
Northwood Gardens Neighborhood Association
Meets third Wednesday of each month at the Fire Station on Broadway at 7:00 pm
To become more involved contact Mike Mullen at (561) 568-7705 or email@example.com or vist them on Facebook
Old Northwood Neighborhood Association-
Meets the third Wednesday of the month at 3510 Spruce Street at 7:00 pm
To become more involved visit their website at www.oldnorthwood.org
Northboro Park Neighborhood Association-
Meets the second Tuesday of the month at the Fire Station on Broadway at 7:00 pm
For more information contact Greg Accordino at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit them on Facebook
Northwood Harbor Neighborhood Association-
Meets on the second Wednesday of the the month at the Fire Station on Broadway at 7:00 pm
To become more involved, contact Romin Currier at (561) 841-8801 or email@example.com
Northwood Hills Neighborhood Association-
Northwood Shores Neighborhood Association-
Meets quarterly, their next meeting is March 13th at 7:00 pm
For volunteer and become active, contact Lon Sabella at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pinewood Park Neighborhood Association-
To become involved contact Denise Smith-Barnes at email@example.com
Northwood Legacy Neighborhood Association-
This new association is just forming, to become involved contact Julie Hyatt at (561) 385-4550